Step Onto Your Platform

“Every battle is won or lost before it’s fought.” ~Sun Tsu, The Art Of War

Get Your Firm on a Platform

(post 1 of 4)

In an earlier post What Brand is your Law Firm? I promised to show the elements of a messaging template, and my last post Why I Became a Lawyer And Why I’m Writing About Marketing introduced the concept of a platform and how it might be used by a law firm.

And that’s what I’ll be doing over these next four posts.

But first, let’s remember why it’s a good idea to have a messaging template, or Casey Demchak calls a Core Message Platform.  Here we’ll just call it a platform.

What is a platform?

I suspect you know that today, marketing your services is critical.  I mean, how will the world know who you are and how you can serve them if you don’t market? Yes?  Or yes?

From BigLaw to Solo, you simply can’t ignore the critical component marketing plays in your business.

A Central Location for Your Messaging

And by platform, I mean a central location for all of the messaging for your firm.

Think of it as a comprehensive document that contains all relevant marketing messages and statements about your firm.

Its purpose is to serve as the master messaging document for your services.

…to Make Your Life Easier

Why not just create messaging ad hoc, as you need it? You certainly can, but the messages will likely be scrambled and lack the consistency needed to develop your reputation.  Because people will not remember a one-off statement or tagline and connect it to you. They must hear it repeatedly.  And as Casey says, repetition creates reputation.

Once completed, it becomes a springboard from which you can write all of the collateral marketing pieces connected to your firm’s services, from web pages to blog posts, speeches to handouts to social meeting postings white papers, video scripts, and email newsletters.

It ensures that all of the marketing pieces spun off from it have a very consistent voice and message.

And probably just as important, it will make creating your messages easy, because you’ll know the tone and central message you want to convey. You’ll just fill in the rest with content valuable to your readers.  And you’ll be much more likely to keep at it if you don’t feel as if you have to write War And Peace every time you sit down to write a newsletter.

Have you ever seen a website or tagline for a lawyer who specializes in marijuana law?  Or a consumer rights lawyer who helps debtors who have been targeted by collection agencies?  Or, on the other side, a law firm who specializes in helping collection agencies navigate the intricacies of federal and state collection statutes, rules and regulations?

Is there any doubt in your mind what these lawyers do?

You’re thinking, but wait, but wait, if I’m known as a [fill in the blank] lawyer that will drive away potential clients who want x, which I can also handle.

Ok, then how about this message? “I have a law license and I’ll do anything”

Do you think you’ll get quality clients with that message?

Being known as a specialist doesn’t mean you can’t do other work, and in fact, highlight other work on your website.

Go For It All … Get Nothing!

But going for everything will get you nothing.

Well maybe not nothing, but it will get you clients who see you as a commodity, and then you’ll start heading down the price rabbit hole.

It’s a recipe for stress and burnout.

Don’t do it.  Instead, think about who you are, who you want to serve, the message, or brand, you want to be associated with, and how you’ll get the message out to your clients and prospective clients.

See what I mean?

We’ll get started in the next post.


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Dave

Dave has been a practicing lawyer for 30+ years, from inside and general counsel, to private practice.
He maintains a private practice as well as a consulting and copywriting business focused on professional services firms.
You can also find him on LinkedIn

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